The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868

In 1868, the parish of Callan contained the following places:

"CALLAN, a parish and market town, in the barony of Callan, in the county of Kilkenny, province of Leinster, Ireland, 9 miles to the S.W. of Kilkenny, and 82 miles from Dublin. It is on the borders of Tipperary, in a cultivated district on the Owenree, or King's River, a branch of the Nore. The town is very old, and was anciently walled, being a place of some importance. It was the site of several castles belonging to the O'Gloherneys, O'Callans, Butlers, and Comerfords. It is a borough by prescription, and returned two members to the Irish parliament from the reign of Queen Elizabeth till the Union, when it was disfranchised. The town was formerly governed by a corporation, composed of a sovereign, burgesses, and freemen, but is now under the Towns' Commission Act. The inhabitants are chiefly engaged in agriculture. There is a large corn-mill. Callan is the seat of a Poor-law Union and a chief police station. Limestone is abundant in the neighbourhood, and is quarried and burnt for farming purposes. The town chiefly belongs to Viscount Clifden, and gives the title of viscount to the Fieldings, earls of Denbigh. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Ossory, Ferns, and Leighlin, of the annual value with five other rectories* and vicarages united, of £1,845 gross, or £1,200 net, in the patronage of the Marquis of Ormond. The church was formerly part of a monastery of the Augustine order, founded in the 15th century by James Earl of Ormond. It has a monument to the Comerfords, and some very old sculptured tombstones. A friary was founded herein 1810, for monks of the Augustine order. The chapel is a stone structure in the early English style, with a groined roof, and an altarpiece copied from a work of Domenichino. It stands by the river, opposite the ruins of the old abbey. There are parochial and National schools, a loan fund, a dispensary, and the Union poorhouse. The chief residence is West Court, formerly the seat of Viscount Callan, now of H. C. Gregory, Esq. Tuesday and Saturday are the market days, but the pig market is discontinued. Fairs are held on the 4th May, the 13th June, the 10th July, the 21st August, the 10th October, the 4th November, and the 14th December."

[Transcribed from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland 1868]
by Colin Hinson ©2018